couple of E-i7 case front panel ideas I am toying with... - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 30 Old 08-14-2013, 04:21 PM - Thread Starter
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due to something that was brought up in my My Somewhat Well Thought Out(TM) Mini-ITX Build I became somewhat obsessed with the thought of making some unique front panels for the E-i7 cases as found in this thread here: Realan E-I5/E-I7 mini ITX case builds

now, I am not entirely sure why I care, as I already have all the mITX builds I currently need... but obsessions being what they are it is probably pointless to question why...

so while I wait for my new case (that I really don't need, nor do I have a MB or other assorted bits to throw in it...) to arrive so I can get some actual measurements, I decided to throw together a couple ideas based on just the general dimensions stated on the web...
first is just remove the ODD and power button, because the 18th century called and they want their power buttons and shiny disks back... and we have things like automation now, so things just turn on when they are needed and shiny disks are just for ripping... so I have no real need for a power button or shiny disks on my htpc...

so assuming an IMON-VFD will actually fit inside the case my first choice would be to mount it flush like so:

not sure if the CQC logo should be extruded or engraved, I will have to think about that a bit... maybe Charmed Quark extruded and CQC-MRD engraved?
also hopefully Dean doesn't sue me for Trademark violation or something, but its just for personal use, so I should be ok...

of course if the IMON-VFD wont fit inside the case then the only option would be to move it forward a bit...


also, I have always thought that cases with built in touch screens were cool... I haven't figured out any practical use for one yet, but they do seem like they would be cool for something...
so I did a quick search of Mouser to see what they had and I found this: http://www.mouser.com/ds/2/116/int035tft-v21-221451.pdf
so here is a rough idea what the panel would look like.


anyway, I am open to any suggestions/ideas...

NOTE: As one wise professional something once stated, I am ignorant & childish, with a mindset comparable to 9/11 troofers and wackjob conspiracy theorists. so don't take anything I say as advice...
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post #2 of 30 Old 08-14-2013, 04:26 PM
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I think it would look nice with a ecosmartpc logo biggrin.gif

FWIW, you ordered the one with the ODD slot. Did you want the one without?

 

 

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post #3 of 30 Old 08-14-2013, 05:00 PM - Thread Starter
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doesn't really matter about the ODD, as I just need it for measurements... I think it will be easier/better to just make a new front panel out of a chunk of billet as that will give me more options...
and logo's can be changed easy enough smile.gif
what font?

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post #4 of 30 Old 08-14-2013, 05:18 PM
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Is that from CATIA v5?

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post #5 of 30 Old 08-14-2013, 06:05 PM
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I can't wait to see what you do.

 

 

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post #6 of 30 Old 08-14-2013, 08:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

Is that from CATIA v5?
Alibre Design 2012
now known geomagic (or put another way, how to go from one stupid name to an even stupider name... really, what was their marketing department thinking???
anyway, it is closer to solidworks than it is to catia.

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post #7 of 30 Old 08-15-2013, 03:48 AM
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The edge renderings of the fillets and the background gradient looked similar, but I did think the blue gradient was a bit light. Are you 3D printing this or machining it?

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post #8 of 30 Old 08-15-2013, 04:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

The edge renderings of the fillets and the background gradient looked similar, but I did think the blue gradient was a bit light. Are you 3D printing this or machining it?
machining...
haven't really kept up with the printing side, can they print aluminum or stainless yet?
I did see some nifty new 3d printers at a design2part show a couple months back, but I really didn't pay much attention to them, but I think they were still just printing with polymers or plastics of some sort...

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post #9 of 30 Old 08-15-2013, 05:05 AM
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Mostly plastics and some with fiberglass or carbon fiber mixed into the plastic for like a carbon fiber grown part. I think there are some metals being printed, but your front panel would cost multiple times the cost of the computer you are installing it into. I don't have personal access to 3D print, only work related.

I was just wondering if it was 3D printed since your lettering would be difficult to machine since there are no end fillets. Also the square opening has no corner fillets and all the edges are rounded which is also costly to machine.

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post #10 of 30 Old 08-15-2013, 06:33 AM - Thread Starter
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after a hard night of abusing some alcohol, I accidentally woke up at 5am this morning with an idea (of sorts)...
anyway, for those who don't think buttons and ODD's have gone the way of the Dodo, how about something like this:

not sure what to make the buttons out of, billet alum? copper/brass for a contrasting cooler? plexy + some LED's for a cool lighting effect? some combo of these? but still, there are plenty of buttons now...
replaced the IMON-VFD with a LCD from Matrix Orbital because it looked cooler, and seemed to fit better... plus it still does the IR remote stuff...

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post #11 of 30 Old 08-15-2013, 06:51 AM - Thread Starter
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I was just wondering if it was 3D printed since your lettering would be difficult to machine since there are no end fillets. Also the square opening has no corner fillets and all the edges are rounded which is also costly to machine.
as far as cost goes, 1st, I am a hobbyist, so cost is somewhat less important than fun factor.
as far as the fillets go, the mill seems pretty good at adding them itself... just a matter of what tool diameter I choose for any given operation...
I just like rounded edges... but yes, to do them nice takes freaking forever.... but even then, Since I am just a hobbyist, I just load up the proper tool, hit the start button, watch the mill for a bit to make sure I haven't made a horrible (and sometimes very costly) mistake, then I go grab a beer and surf the net/play xbox/watch TV/whatever while the mill does its thing... so cost is somewhat subjective here...

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post #12 of 30 Old 08-15-2013, 07:05 AM
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I actually abhor logos on cases smile.gif. Silverstone and Akasa have such nice cases and then they put this huge logo on them. It totally ruins the simplistic appeal of those cases for me. If I ever customize a logo it will be for the back or underside of the case smile.gif.

An interesting thing about the E-i7 and the eject is with the Toshiba TS-TB23L BD-ROMs I install, I leave the faceplate/eject button on and with the 3mm aluminum it has just enough flex that if you push on the front of the case below the slot it'll activate the button and eject. It's pretty cool. It keeps the look clean and works like a charm.

But, that's just what I would do. This is your hobby, not mine smile.gif. It is kind of funny that this week I did get an email asking if I could mod the case to install a 5.25" bay for a VFD/IR.

 

 

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post #13 of 30 Old 08-15-2013, 07:10 AM
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When extra machining time costs beer instead of money then that's a different story. I'm still not sure how you would machine a squared edge pocket or square button openings unless you have a zero diameter cutter or are doing that post machining.

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post #14 of 30 Old 08-15-2013, 07:14 AM
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It's funny how it's always about beer. Any sport/hobby I've ever participated in at any level: HTPC, volleyball, triathlon ... it's all about having beers. biggrin.gif I've noticed too with the more expensive sports/hobbies it's usually microbrews too. Not too many BudMillCoors drinkers.

 

 

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post #15 of 30 Old 08-15-2013, 08:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

I'm still not sure how you would machine a squared edge pocket or square button openings unless you have a zero diameter cutter or are doing that post machining.
oh that is simple... the actual machined part will have a radius... it will be the radius of whatever tool I use for the clean up path... end result is actual part wont match 100% with the model...
from a professional stand point not having the actual part match the model is probably a big "no-no" I would guess...
but I am just a hobbyist with no particular delusions of grandeur that I am aware of, so not having the actual part match the model 100% is not really that big of a deal to me, as long as it is close enough...

NOTE: As one wise professional something once stated, I am ignorant & childish, with a mindset comparable to 9/11 troofers and wackjob conspiracy theorists. so don't take anything I say as advice...
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post #16 of 30 Old 08-15-2013, 08:24 AM - Thread Starter
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I've noticed too with the more expensive sports/hobbies it's usually microbrews too. Not too many BudMillCoors drinkers.
I usually start with Hacker-Pschorr then after one or two switch to Miller Lite... kind of average it out...
although I guess Hacker-Pschorr isn't really a micro brew really...

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post #17 of 30 Old 09-02-2013, 03:52 PM - Thread Starter
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so... I haven't forgot about this... just got time to start doing something this weekend...
Saturday was a very bad day...
so I scrapped that, and started again today...

so for anybody who likes these sort of things, here is a picture of the work in progress:

still a bunch to do... but hey, its a start...

NOTE: As one wise professional something once stated, I am ignorant & childish, with a mindset comparable to 9/11 troofers and wackjob conspiracy theorists. so don't take anything I say as advice...
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post #18 of 30 Old 09-02-2013, 06:36 PM
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I cannot wait to see what this looks like smile.gif.

 

 

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post #19 of 30 Old 09-08-2013, 04:44 PM - Thread Starter
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well got the basic shape down this weekend...



now for just some cleaning/prep/final tweaking...
if I actually do what I am thinking and it comes out the way I hope, the CQC-MRD (yes I like TLA's...) will disappear under normal conditions.... and be more subliminal under others... assuming my brilliant idea actually works out...

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post #20 of 30 Old 09-09-2013, 12:28 PM
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Ummm... what are you going to do with the lighter fluid? wink.gif

 

 

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post #21 of 30 Old 09-09-2013, 02:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Ummm... what are you going to do with the lighter fluid? wink.gif
that's just for my lighter...
everything finds its way onto the dining room table eventually...

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post #22 of 30 Old 10-12-2013, 03:35 PM - Thread Starter
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still a work in progess... haven't forgot this... just been distracted...
here is where I am currently at:

just need to do a little cosmetic clean up, and then install...

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post #23 of 30 Old 10-27-2013, 08:06 AM - Thread Starter
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so I was doing some final assembly bits on my little HTPC/thingy... and I ran into a minor little major road block...
I was planning on using an Intel SSD I had sitting around for the drive... it is just like 60GB, nothing at all fancy...
so I purposely set the SSD aside, so it wouldn't get lost...
but apparently I set it aside a little to well... as now I cant find it...
so has anyone seen my SSD?

I thought about using my spare Revodrive3 x2 I have laying around... but A) it no fit, and B) even if it did, that thing while amazingly fast is like 13.1W at idle...

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post #24 of 30 Old 10-29-2013, 08:33 AM - Thread Starter
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found my SSD...
now I think the AC adapter may have wondered off...
all ready to power up and start installing windows, and I can't seem to find the AC adapter... I am pretty sure the case came with one...

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post #25 of 30 Old 10-29-2013, 08:34 AM
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LOL. You sound like me trying to build something. I can never find my screwdriver or TIM.

They usually come with an AC adapter but is this the one you're using a DQ77KB with?

 

 

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post #26 of 30 Old 10-30-2013, 07:46 AM - Thread Starter
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no, this is the asus something board... been a while I forgot what it was...
anyway, I found a AC adapter.... it may be "The" AC adapter, I am not sure... but its 12V and 84W, so it should be good enough, I think...

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post #27 of 30 Old 10-30-2013, 11:24 AM
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The E-i7 comes standard with a 12V/7A 84W AC adapter so that's probably it. I think it says e-mini on it somewhere.

 

 

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post #28 of 30 Old 12-14-2013, 04:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Just a little update with some pics...
all assembled:

sageTV installed..

bad pic of CQC-MRD logo thingy with PC on(I am photographically disabled or something, I can't take pictures worth a crap...) with flash off since the flash totally washes it out...

I was going to go with 4 LED's for the logo, but 2 of them made their escape while I was attempting to solder them, and one has an open somewhere, I think it may be the bonding wire internal to the LED... had issues with them before, mostly do to RoHS solder temps, so not sure why I am having an issue with him as I hate RoHS and used regular lead solder... but anyway, one LED seems to be good enough...

fwiw, that pinkish blob with the red, yellow and blue bits (aka the Woot! Disco Mouse)is quite possibly the worst mouse to use for a HTPC (or well, ANY PC really...) the red, yellow and blue bits light up very brightly... and they blink... fortunately it is unplugged now that everything is working (mostly)
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post #29 of 30 Old 12-14-2013, 07:37 PM
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i applaud your efforts
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post #30 of 30 Old 12-15-2013, 06:49 PM
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Really impressive. You're hired smile.gif

 

 

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